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It is called “the Cannabis Revolution”. The advocacy of legal cannabis, particularly for medicinal use, has in recent years boomed, becoming a regular revolution. Supporters are people who have either seen or felt the beneficial properties of cannabis and CBD, and who have become determined to share it with the world.

For centuries, cannabis has had a bad reputation – but that is all about to change. Here are 25 facts that you may not know about the revolution for legal cannabis:

1. The North American cannabis industry had a turnover of $6.7 billion in 2016, 30% higher

2. Colorado has amassed more than $150 million in taxes and fees from its legal market for cannabis, of which nearly $50 million stem from an excise specifically earmarked school construction projects.

3. 95% of Americans supported the legalisation of cannabis in 2016. Two years prior, this number was just 52%. The growing support of cannabis is clear to see, as the support was at just 35% in 2006.

4. Estimations predict that by 2020, the US sales of cannabis will generate more profits than the National Football League.

5. Cannabis is the biggest cash crop in the United States; bigger than corn and wheat combined

6. The very first e-purchase was of cannabis. It took place in Stanford in 1971, where students used the internet to make the transaction.

7. In Colorado, there are three times more medical cannabis dispensaries than Starbucks

8. A pot-smoker would have to smoke practically 750 kilos of cannabis within 15 minutes in order to induce a lethal “high”

9. Research shows that delta9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the most abundant component of matured cannabis, is able to stop the growth of cancerous cells in the liver.

10. The word “canvas” derives from the word “cannabis”, because canvasses are produced from hemp fibres. The lines, sails and caulking of the Mayflower were all made from hemp fibres.

11. Cannabis seeds are an ideal source of amino acids. Amino acids are amongst the few organic compounds that the human body can store and needs for building and repairing tissue, fending off disease and producing energy. Hemp seeds contain an ideal 3:1 balance of the amino acids Omega 3 and 6, and are able to promote cardiovascular health. They also carry a high level of Gamma-linolenic acid (GLA), also found in cooking oils and egg yolks, which is an important type of Omega 6 that balances hormones naturally.

12. The University of Mississippi runs the only legally accepted cannabis farm in the US, where they grow cannabis on behalf of the US Government.

13. The difference between hemp and pot is a single genetic switch. In 2011, researchers of University of Saskatchewan (USASK), Canada discovered the genetic change required for cannabis plants (Cannabis Sativa) to produce a psychoactive effect. Hemp stems from the same plant as cannabis, but hemp plants do not produce the compound tetrahydrocannabinol acid (THCa), which is the preliminary compound of THC. This is because hemp does not contain he genetic switch, which causes an enzyme is the cannabis plant to produce THCa, says USASK biochemist, Jon Page. Instead, hemp plants (as opposed to cannabis plants) produce an abundance of the compound cannabidiol acid (CBDa), which is the non-psychoactive precursor to the non-psychoactive cannabinoid CBD.

14. Through a period of 20 years, the US Drug Enforcement Agency measured the levels of the active compound, THC, in over 38,600 samples of confiscated street-cannabis. The results were published in 2016 and showed that the amount of THC had risen dramatically, from 4% in 1995 to 12% in 2014.

15. Both Thomas Jefferson and George Washington owned hemp farms. The British Empire even ordered the first American colonists to cultivate hemp.

16. Since 2015, cannabis has been the fastest growing industry in the United States. If cannabis becomes legal in all 50 states, the market is estimated to grow bigger than the market for organic produce.

17. During Prohibition in 1890s USA, it was generally recommended to replace alcohol with cannabis. The reason for this was that cannabis did not lead to the domestic violence that alcohol abuse did.

18. Paraguay is said to be the biggest manufacturer of cannabis in the world.

19. In 2015, 23% of Colorado tourists stated that the access to legal cannabis has positively affected their decision to visit the state.

20. Since legalizing cannabis, Colorado has reached an historic low for road traffic fatalities.

21. The first two drafts of the US Constitution were written on hemp paper. Bob Crumley, the founder of Crumley-Roberts, FoundersHemp.com and the NC Industrial Hemp Association claims that the first five US presidents were hemp users.

22. According to the United Nations, more than 158.8 million people use cannabis; 3.8% of the world’s population.

23. Cannabis mimics the body’s own chemistry. The active ingredient in cannabis, THC, is structurally very similar to anandamide, a natural compound that your body produces. Anandamide is part of the endocannabinoid system (ECS), which plays a role in the regulation of your mood, sleep cycle and appetite.

24. Just like human, animals can also reap the benefits of cannabis. Vets have reported significant improvements in cats and dogs with debilitating conditions, such as anxiety or seizures, by the use of medical cannabis. Canna-Pet and other non-psychoactive tinctures based on cannabis have improved the health of many animals of any size, shape and age.

25. The Jamestown settlement, the first permanent English settlement in the Americas, declared in 1619 that all settlers were required to grow hemp for the production of ropes, fabrics and sails. This literally meant that it was illegal not to grow hemp.

The growth of the cannabis industry in the Americas is nothing new. For hundreds of years, the United States have been a First mover when it comes to cannabis and hemp, and will most likely continue to be so through the rapid growth of the modern cannabis industry.

But as more and more countries are coming to the realisation that cannabis is by no means a bad crop, the cannabis and hemp industries are more worldwide than ever before.

And as legal cannabis is sweeping the nations, the consumers are the true winners. The choice has never been greater and with the rise in demand for clean and high-quality products, we have barely even seen the tip of the iceberg. There is still so much left unexplored that the market is open for anyone who is interested: public institutions, private businesses, innovators, non-profit organisations, and home-growers.

The time of cannabis has just begun.

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